Ramadan is almost here, time feels like it’s going quicker and quicker and Ramadan creeps up on us and then bang it’s here and I feel under prepared. We all want to get the most out of our Ramadan, it only happens once a year and we feel we aren’t doing enough, worship, spending time with our families, good deeds, being the model Muslim and more
To gain some clarity I’m going to give you 5 of my (so that means they’re subjective) tips for productivity in Ramadan that are easy to digest, no pun 😉
1/ Juz/Chapter of Quran a Day – I usually sit down in the evening to read, if I can I’ll split it up in the day, it’s more digestible for me that way. Try to read, listen, recite, memorize Surahs (verses) from the Quran daily, it’s split up into 30 chapters so that’s one a day.
Women on their menses can still listen, read the Quran with gloves on. Even if it’s the transliteration or translation, spend time with the book of Allah because it’s the month of Quran and the month it was revealed in. We’re all busy with work, kids but we have to make extra effort in the holy month, that means pushing ourselves and connecting with and understanding the Quran.
Furthermore there are a number of daily Ramadan video series, some are shared on Twitter. I’ve listened to Mufti Menk’s one’s, he does it every year Nouman Ali Khan has good one’s on YouTube with explanations and understanding of verses from the Quran.
2/ Give Money Every Time you go to the Mosque – My husband and I try to go to Taraweeh every night, we take money to give every night, it doesn’t have to be a lot but be consistent because Allah loves good deeds that are done consistently.
If you don’t go to the Mosque there are plenty of causes that need money. The ummah is in a terrible state all over the world. One Nation in Syria is 100% donation policy, National Zakat Foundation, HHugs etc you can find them on Twitter and online.
Your reward is multiplied in Ramadan and I can attest that whenever we give money we get it back multiplied, try it for yourself and see. And ultimately these are the deeds that will be of benefit to you in your akhirah (afterlife).
This also applies to the Eid fun fairs that are organised for the past number of years, if you go to a prayer in the park or an Eid fun fair support them, they spend a lot of time and effort organising this so our children have something fun to do on Eid instead of it being boring and like every other day in this country.
3/ Eid Shopping & Preparations – I try to get my Eid shopping done before Ramadan starts. So that means I need to be organised, planning, lists so I can focus on the month without the distractions. I do some food preparations nothing major but I have general ideas of what to cook, it’s a lot easier for me this way.
4/ Cooking & Eating – I can’t eat heavy food in these long hours of Ramadan especially in the hot weather. We are #Team18Degrees so we’re fasting for around 20 hours a day. That’s 4 hours to pray 2 prayers, eat, drive to the mosque & pray taraweeh, get in a quick nap and then eat again for Sahoor. I haven’t done the making samosa, kebabs etc in bulk and freezing it all, I’m not that organised unfortunately.
In the beginning I start off with seafood, mussels, prawns, tuna, salmon with other light food with it for about a week. It’s the best food to eat, it’s light on the stomach, easy to digest, nutritional, gives you energy. When we’re going to the mosque we don’t feel tired or bloated and heavy. We also have water, holy land dates, Palestinian, Medina/Makkah, fruit and juice. The heavy Asian food is not good for you, its oily, greasy and hard to digest all that meat.
When we’ve gotten used to fasting then I start cooking meat and heavier foods but try to keep it healthy unless I’m really craving something. I also keep my cooking to a minimal, I’m KO’d, fasting is really tough on me and I don’t want to be a hero in the kitchen for hours, i keep it quick and simple and buy bits.
Make sure you give yourself a break, let your spouse and others help with cooking, doing the dishes afterwards. It’s the month of worship, let’s focus less on the food.
5/ Take Your Time – It’s a marathon not a sprint people are very eager in the beginning and by the end of the first week the enthusiasm has dipped.
Take your time, don’t rush do what you can daily Quran, Dhikr, Taraweeh, split up the cooking so you’re not standing there for hours.
Don’t compare your Ramadan to others
People love for some reason to prove to others how much they’re doing. It’s between you and Allah, don’t concern yourself over what people are tweeting. The photos from Makkah when you can’t go and haven’t been, the magnificent food spreads with 20 people when you can’t afford it, people finishing the Quran umpteen times, the big dinner fundraisers with all the ‘famous’ mashaykhs and you can’t go because you have young kids.
It’s not about the show, just try to better yourself, do consistent deeds and get closer to your lord through the Quran and Sunnah. That’s it, we don’t need to make it more complicated than that. We all have different capabilities and are at different levels all we should do it try our best. Figure out what you want to do in Ramadan and want to get out of it and make a plan and keep at it.
May we all have a blessed and productive Ramadan. It’s a time of unity brothers and sisters, forgiveness and reflection. May Allah remove the dirt from our hearts and soften them. The malice, grudges we have for each other, jealousy and envy. May Allah guide us and keep us on the right path. Allah keep us steadfast. May he forgive us and grant us all Jannah Ameen. If this has benefitted you make a Dua for me please.
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